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Stephen and Erica Burch bought this home
in Rutland for a price made affordable
through the HARP program.



Assessing affordability

Housing affordability is based on the relationship between a resident's income and their housing costs.  A long-standing rule of thumb is that, on average, a household's housing expenses are likely affordable for them if they consume no more than 30% of their monthly income. 

To help guide communities seeking to measure or define home affordability, VHFA created and annually updates a matrix that links household income levels to the maximum monthly rent levels and purchase prices likely to be affordable. ​

Vermont Act 250 definition of affordable owner housing

Vermont’s Act 250 section pertaining to “priority housing” (10 VSA sec. 6001(35) and (27)(A)) defines mixed income owner-occupied housing as newly developed complexes that include a mix of market rate and affordable homes.  Affordable homes are defined as units with purchase prices that do not exceed 85-90 percent of "the new construction, targeted area purchase price limits established and published annually by the Vermont Housing Finance Agency.”

 Targeted area purchase  price limit* $350,000
        90% $315,000
        85% $297,500

*In addition to assisting municipalities and planners, VHFA offers a variety of mortgage programs to home buyers that each have unique income and purchase price requirements.  If you are thinking about buying a home through VHFAread more about our mortgage options. 

Rental housing meeting requirements set in Act 250 may also qualify as priority housing.  Read more in the Act's 10 VSA sec. 6001(27)(B) and (29)(B). 

Questions about qualifying as "priority housing" under Act 250?  Contact Vermont's Natural Resources Board.